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Find the right wicking bed for your garden

Stop worrying about watering your plants and start to fully enjoy your food garden. With a wicking garden bed, you can relax and leave your garden unattended for weeks, knowing that your plants will thrive as they have everything they need, when they need it.

Completed ModBOX wicking bed in Melbourne Garden
Looking for wicking beds for sale? Wicking garden beds are a great way of saving money, time, and using less water

Choose from a range of shapes

What are wicking beds?

Wicking beds are raised garden beds with a water reservoir below the level of the soil. Water is drawn up from the reservoir to the soil above via capillary or wicking action. Moisture level in the soil is maintained at a constant rate over extended periods. This minimises the need to add water whilst evenly distributing moisture, providing better growing conditions for plants.

How does it work?

A Wicking garden bed is composed of three distinct zones (from the bottom up):

  • the Water Reservoir
  • the Saturation Zone
  • the Root Growth Zone

1. The Water Reservoir

The Water Reservoir is designed to store the water for the plants above. It also captures the nutrients that are washed off the soil during top watering. The height of this zone is critical to the function of the wicking garden bed. An oversized water reservoir will cause the water to stagnate and cause problems like building up of salt in the system. An undersized water reservoir will drain too quickly during the hottest periods drying up the soil.

2. The Saturation Zone

The Saturation Zone is the heart of the wicking system. It is here that the soil meets the water reservoir and overlaps. Within this zone, the water moves upward by capillary action from the water reservoir at the base of the garden bed to the growing medium on the top. The height of this section is critical for the functioning of the whole system and determines the level of moisture in the Root Growth Zone.

3. The Root Growth Zone

Most edible plants will develop root systems within the top 200-300mm of soil. In this zone, water and air need to be in the right ratio for the plant requirements. It is for this reason that particular attention needs to be given to the composition of the soil mix. Failure to do this means the whole system will not work properly causing waterlogging or a non-wicking garden.

Illustrative diagram of a wicking garden bed, showing the various parts of the wicking system.
Getting the right measurements and soil composition for your wicking garden bed is crucial for a successful wicking system.

Why should you choose a wicking garden bed?

There are several benefits to choosing a wicking bed over a traditional garden bed:

1. Reduced water consumption

Water need is reduced by as much as 90% compared to ordinary garden beds. This results in a significantly lower impact on the environment and less money spent on water bills;

2. Low-maintenance garden

Increased water retention means lower watering frequency. Garden beds can be left unattended for extended periods without any risk of damage to plants;

3. Stronger, healthier plants

Plant roots grow deeply into the soil attracted by the underground water source. 
This results in stronger, healthier and more productive plants;

4. Better nutrient retainment

Soil nutrients do not leave the garden bed by being washed away during top watering. There is more food available to the plants and less need to add extra fertilisers;

5. No risk of overwatering

Water is added directly into the water reservoir until it reaches the overflow level. No chance of over-watering the plants;

6. No loss of water due to evaporation

The topsoil of a wicking garden bed remains reasonably dry due to the soil below retaining the moisture, and as such topsoil evaporation is very minimal.

Why choose ModBOX wicking beds?

At ModBOX, we specialise in crafting high quality, sustainably made wicking garden beds crafted from Callitris Cypress and certified food-grade materials. You can choose from a range of shapes and sizes, or get your own custom made wicking bed, perfect for your individual garden needs.

Our products are made in our wood-workshop on the Mornington Peninsula, just one hour from Melbourne. We’re passionate about creating high quality wicking beds that provide you with healthy, flourishing plants for years to come. We use sustainably grown Callitris Cypress, so you can rest easy knowing the production of your wicking bed didn’t harm the Earth.

We guarantee all our wicking garden beds for 10 years against any defect or structural failure and the life expectancy of a properly handled ModBOX is more than 25 years.

The assembly of your ModBOX wicking garden bed will be easy with the step-by-step instruction booklet. And if you live in Melbourne’s South Eastern suburbs or the Mornington Peninsula, we offer a home installation service, too.

Have you got any questions? Take a look at our FAQs, or contact us today. We’d love to hear from you.

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